Thursday, 20 April 2017

Red tailed Hawk by Nancy Schoellkopf + Giveaway

Red-tailed Hawk by Nancy Schoellkopf
Published by Butterfly Tree Publishing on the 1st February 2017.

Where to buy this book:
Buy the ebook from

How I got this book:
Received a review copy via iRead Book Tours
(See the other stops on the tour)

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

When Mariah Easter encounters a large hawk in her urban midtown neighborhood, her father Charlie is concerned. He can see a wild and mystical path opening before his daughter, a path he himself would never be able to resist. The hawk soon reappears: engraved with its twin on a golden thimble that has been an Easter family heirloom for generations. After the thimble is stolen at a funeral reception, Mariah and her mother Samantha set off on a road trip to find it, a journey that will bring healing to the grieving family and change Mariah's life forever. Red-Tailed Hawk is a coming of age story, the tale of a young woman's quest to discover the source of her own longing and to understand the mystical legacy of her family.

Red-tailed Hawk is the second novel in Nancy Schoellkopf's Easter family series and it takes place some two decades after Yellow-billed Magpie which I also reviewed earlier this month. The first book explored Samantha's coming of age and her blossoming relationship with fellow teacher Charlie. Now we get to see how their daughter, Mariah, reacts to an unexpected family bereavement and the strange repeated appearances, both actual and symbolic, of red-tailed hawks in her life.

A frequently revisited theme within this novel is that nothing is truly a coincidence. I liked how Schoellkopf weaves this maxim around her tale and uses the Easter's family's strong beliefs in the mystical world to explain actions and decisions which otherwise could have seemed rashly impetuous! Red-tailed Hawk is slow to get going. A lot of background information is offloaded early on which I found irritating at times because I would have preferred to have been shown our leading characters more clearly. However, once the road trip search for a stolen family heirloom gets underway I became more engrossed in the story and especially liked the cameo portrayals of the cantankerous antique shop owner and waitress Cherry.

Perhaps the individual towns visited en route could have benefited from greater detail in their descriptions because one did seem much like another, despite Mariah and her family travelling hundreds of miles across America between them. Red-tailed Hawk does not have the grounding in place that characterised Yellow-billed Magpie and I felt some kind of anchor of this sort was needed to counterbalance the journey. More time spent exploring the supernatural story elements would also have helped me I think. These scenes seemed overly rushed and I wasn't totally convinced by our story's sudden swerve in that direction. All in all though, Red-tailed Hawk is a nice coming-of-age story with a strong sense of spirituality and of family.

Nancy Schoellkopf is the author of Yellow-billed Magpie, the first in her Easter Family series. Nancy has been telling stories and writing poems for many lifetimes. It goes without saying that she'd need a second income, so this time around she has happily taught amazing children in special education classes in two urban school districts in Sacramento, California. A full time writer now, she enjoys lavishing attention on her cats, her garden, and her intriguing circle of family and friends.

Connect with Nancy via her website, Twitter and Facebook

And now it's giveaway time!
Win one of three signed copies of Red-tailed Hawk, plus one winner will also get a $20 Amazon gift card. There will be 3 winners in total and the giveaway is open until the 6th of May (Sorry, it's USA & Canada entrants only)

Here's the giveaway widget:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Search Lit Flits for more:
Books by Nancy Schoellkopf / Women's fiction / Books from America


  1. Thank you for your thoughtful review! I'm very grateful to have my novel featured on your blog.